Friday, April 9, 2010

Deadspin's Dead Wrestler Of The Week: Chris Kanyon


Most people who follow blogs closely have probably heard of Gawker media. They are the pinnacle of blog popularity. One of the websites under them is Deadspin, which claims to deliver sports "without access, favor or discretion." They absolutely come through on that claim as their targets have ranged from the likes of Tiger Woods and Alex Rodriguez to Sean Salisbury and Steve Phillips. Anyway, I visit Deadspin for the sheer lulz and their often humorous take on sports. Plus, they have some excellent writers like Drew Margarey and Will Leitch. Anyway, a few weeks ago they started a weekly tribute to dead wrestlers. These columns have been absolutely great as they combine passion for wrestling, emotional attachment to the wrestlers along with some excellent writing. This week, in trying to be topical, Deadspin takes a glance at the underachieving yet controversial career of the recently deceased Chris Kanyon.

Here is Deadspin's own description of it.

Every week, the Masked Man, Deadspin's pro wrestling correspondent, honors the sport's fallen and examines their legacies — famous and obscure alike. Today: Chris Kanyon, who was found dead Friday in his Queens, New York, apartment after an apparent suicide.

I will just do a teaser of sorts on here, if you want to read the rest of it, you should click right here :

Chris Kanyon was the prototypical performer of his era in all the wrong ways. He was a midcarder with constantly mutating gimmicks and schizophrenic allegiances, simultaneously afforded television time by the bloat of late '90s wrestling television and yet perceived as criminally underused by the "smarts" of the wrestling message boards — an upwardly mobile jobber with nowhere to go.

One can hardly get past the headline of any of the multitude of Chris Kanyon obits in recent days without being confronted with Kanyon's "idiosyncrasy" — which is to say, his apparent homosexuality. The irony of this is that Kanyon was never a particularly eccentric on-screen personality. That his personal life belied his public persona — and defied the strictures of the two-dimensional character wrestling had created for him — seems to have eventually spelled his end, both in career and, sadly, in life. The wrestling world has always had a hard time handling idiosyncrasy in three dimensions.

Born and raised in New York, Chris Klucsaritis was a physical therapist before he jumped into the biz. He worked a few weekend shows before he committed to the craft full-time, and he worked as "enhancement talent" several times in the WWF — which means that he existed to be demolished by the established stars of the day. But his full-time career functionally began in WCW in 1997, when he debuted as "Mortis," a cartoonish Grim Reaper, in the painful-to-watch "Blood Runs Cold" story. WCW was attempting, blatantly, to rip-off Mortal Kombat and its burgeoning popularity, and the story saw Mortis and his partner "Wrath" feud with a babyface named "Glacier" in a sort of alternate WCW universe. "Blood Runs Cold" was plainly a product of the pre-nWo era, and its debut was pushed back by the sudden arrival of Scott Hall and Kevin Nash to the promotion. (What is too often overlooked about the innovation of the nWo is how unbearably bad some of the dreck it replaced on WCW TV actually was.)

Well, the Masked Man's tribute to Kanyon was a lot kinder than mine . Once again he does a good job of chronicling a wrestler's career, and I imagine it will be touching to all 6 of the Kanyon fans out there.

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